Asia Pacific Co-operation for the Sustainable use of Renewable Natural resources in Biosphere Reserves AND Similarly Managed Areas

( ASPACO)

2 November 2001- Pacific island approaches to integrated coastal conservation and sustainable human development are about to come under consideration at the Pacific ASPACO meeting (Apia, Samoa, 7-8 November 2001). UNESCO, UNDP, SPREP, UNU, ISME, MAB and Japan are joining forces to stimulate the partnerships in the Asia Pacific region.

The meeting will gather Country Representatives from 16 countries, Representatives of Pacific Rim Biosphere Reserves (Galapagos, Taiaro Atoll, Juan Fernandez, Hawaiian Islands, Fitzgerald River) and ASPACO partners. Pacific donor governments (Australia and New Zealand), as well as other bodies concerned (CI, TNC, WWF, IUCN) will also be represented. The opportunities brought by the World Network of Biosphere Reserves (pls insert link) are going to be harnessed as a vehicle for biodiversity conservation and integrated management of natural resources in the Pacific region. Steps will be taken for identification of pilot sites in the framework of ASPACO and establishment of an interagency forum for exchange of experiences in biodiversity conservation and natural resources management. The meeting is expected to bring a novel response to the recommendation of the Science Agenda - Framework for Action (pls insert link) that appeal for special attention to be given to the development of research programmes on biodiversity and monitoring the Earth system (paragraphs 29, 30).

For further information contact Ecological Sciences Division, Sector for Exact and Natural Sciences, UNESCO; e-mail: m.clusener-godt(a)unesco.org; web: http://www.unesco;org/mab/